How to Complete an Emergency Utility Shut Off

Learn how to properly shut off your utilities in an emergency.

A natural disaster can strike very suddenly and with little warning. That’s why it’s important to have an action plan for when these emergencies arise. In many situations, one of the first things you’ll need to do is shut off your home’s utilities. Here are some tips to help you take care of your home’s utilities when faced with an impending emergency.

Natural Gas

During a natural disaster, a natural gas leak in your home could create a very dangerous situation. That’s why every member of your household should know how to shut off your natural gas. Because every home’s gas meter is configured differently, you should contact your local gas company for advice on how to best shut off your gas in an emergency. Post these instructions near your gas meter so anyone can follow the directions. If at any point you smell gas or hear a hissing noise, everyone needs to evacuate the home. Once the emergency has passed, do not attempt to turn your gas back on by yourself. This procedure needs to be handled by an experienced professional.


Because water is such an integral resource, it’s important to ensure that the water entering your home is safe to handle. Because cracked pipes can pollute water, you should turn off your water following a natural disaster until you know that it is safe to drink. Every water line that enters your home should have a shut-off valve. Make sure you know where the main shut-off valve is beforehand. If you cannot locate your valve or if you are unsure how to operate it, contact a plumber or your local water utility company for help.


Because an electrical spark can start a major fire, it’s important that you shut off your electricity immediately when faced with a natural disaster. Locate your home’s circuit box before an emergency hits and make sure everyone knows where it is. Once you locate the circuit box, flipping the “main” circuit breaker will cut off your home’s electricity. If you need help locating your circuit box or need help operating the main circuit breakers, then contact a licensed electrician for assistance.

Knowing how to shut off your home’s utilities is an important step in keeping your loved ones and your home safe during an emergency. Remember, another way to keep things safe is by having the insurance protection you need. To find the right policies for you, contact the experts at Pierce Insurance Group. Our dedicated professionals are eager to assist you with all your coverage needs.